Muslim Association of Malawi (MAM) has refused to confirm on whether the report released by Muslim Sisters Aids Network (Musanet) on HIV/AIDS prevalence rate among Muslims is true or not.
At its closing session of a three-months training on HIV/AIDS in Blantyre on Sunday, Musanet reported that 200 out of its 1,000 members are living positively with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, a figure well above the official national prevalence rate estimated by the National AIDS Commission to be at 12%. The statitics have shocked many Malawian Muslims.
Muslim Association of Malawi Executive Secretary brother Saiti Jambo told Malawi Muslim Official Website that his organization can not comment much on the report saying “issues of HIV/AIDS are difficult to understand.” He added that “As MAM we have never come up with a report on how many Muslims are living with HIV/AIDS because we know it is difficult to ask people about their status. It relies on only those who have been already tested and voluntarily declared their status,”
Musanet is an Islamic organization in Malawi which was formed three years ago with an aim of breaking the silence that was there among Muslim Women on HIV/AIDS pandemic and it is currently being sponsored by Mai Aisha Trust.
According to its chairperson Jamila Lire, with K800 000 support from Mai Aisha Trust, it has trained over 600 women in homebased care. The organization’s activities have also helped many women to come out in the open and share experiences on HIV/AIDS.
I think we are missing the point here. These figures are based on a particular grouping of Muslims, which is MUSANET. According to sister Lire, MUSANET has a membership of 1,000 sisters and out of these, 200 are HIV positive, translates to 20%. This figure has nothing to do with NAC estimates becoz it does not represent all the Muslims or the whole country. For your own information in MUSANET we have sister that have volunteered to disclose their status and these estimates are based on that.
Please let us not confuse people, and as Muslims let us learn to accept that HIV and AIDs has not spared us either. It has racked havoc within our communities as well as any other community in the world. We are not exceptional, hence the need for us to put our hands together and fight this pandemic head-on.
If there are any of you out there who want to know more about MUSANET, we are going to have our general meeting on Sunday,3rd October 2010 at Limbe Islamic Information Bureau. Our grouping is for all Muslim sisters despite their HIV status, so you are all welcome inshaAllah.
This issue has long enough been discussed and those who feel can take true picture can go ahead and those who feel are missing point can ponder upon all the comments again and again.
MAM is right not to comment because the figures were based on what MUSANET found.Nobody asked them but did it for their own record so we can'nt argue with their finding and they were right to piblicise their results.
brother Ishmael, there is no need to be defensive over this issue.whether the survey was conducted for MUSANET's internal use or for public use,the point is Aids/HIV is here and is affecting everyone.what we need to do as muslims is to accept that we are not spared and hence we need to take action to save this ummah otherwise burrying our heads in the sand wont save us from this disease.brother, the fact is Aids is also eating us and therefore, we have to be proactive.sometimes brother,go to the villages and see how people are affected with this disease.remember, muslims supposed to be the models in the societies in which they live.
ALLAH HELP US. AMEEN
Very correct brother. Indeed may Allah help us .Ameen